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RF Signal Repeater In Mobile Communications Systems - Patent 6839539

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FIELDEmbodiments of the invention relate to RF signal repeaters and more particularly, to the use of an RF signal repeater having an electronic signature imposed upon the repeated signal to allow identification of the signal repeater.BACKGROUNDWireless data services are used for remote access of e-mail, mobile Internet browsing, company information and others. To attract new and existing subscribers to data services, the operator need to support perceived data rates of 64 kbps orgreater. Within GSM networks, two such services are General Packet Radio Service (GPRS) and Enhanced Data for GSM Evolution (EDGE). Both bring packet data connectivity to the GSM market at a variety of data rates. To support the high data rates ineither service, however, requires increasing the signal-to-noise ratio (SNR) at the receiving handset. As a handset user travels further from a transmitting base station, the SNR must inevitably drop. For both GPRS and EDGE receivers, as the SNR drops,the bit error rate at the receiver will increase. In response, both services will shift the data transmission to a lower data rate, using more redundancy (channel coding) in the transmission to offset the lowered SNR. Thus, users will find that theirrealized data rate will decrease by a significant percentage when moved from locations near a cell base station toward the cell edges due to increased channel interference (C/I) and reduced signal-to-noise ratios (SNR). Typically, less than 20% of acell area is estimated to be capable of the peak GPRS data rate in a coverage limited deployment.One way to increase the data rates for these services would be to locate RF repeaters within a cell that retransmit the base station signals to handsets remote from the cell's base station. Similarly, the RF repeater could retransmit handsetsignals to the cell's base station. An inherent problem of repeating a signal transmission with little or no frequency translation is that the retransmitted signal may f

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